May 08, 2021

Meanwhile: In Chernobyl

One of out Crack Team of Science Babes has called our attention to happenings in Ukraine. 



"I guess it's true then. 2020 won."

Uh. She seems dismayed. Well, lets look at her tabs...
 Thirty-five years after the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine exploded in the world’s worst nuclear accident, fission reactions are smoldering again in uranium fuel masses buried deep inside a mangled reactor hall.

Oh. 

Oh dear. 

A quick perusal of the article indicates that rainwater leaking into the sub-basements of the stricken power plant was acting as a moderator and facilitating increased nuclear reactions in the solidified mass of uranium that constitutes the now solidified melted-down fuel pile. To combat this, the powers that be erected a rain-proof shelter over the highly radioactive ruin. Unfortunately there has recently been a spike in neutron emissions from a particularly isolated room where the formerly molten mass solidified. There are concerns that the water had been acting as a moderator there as well, but in such a way as to prevent  chain reactions rather than facilitate them, and now that the water has drained/ evaporated out this area is getting all fissiony. 

Pouring water into the catacombs paved with uranium risks causing chain reactions in other areas.

This is a mess. While a runaway chain reaction would not cause an actual nuclear bomb equivalent, it could cause a steam explosion and possibly fires which would spread radioactivity. 

Or not...because these are counterintuitive neutrons and scientists are unsure of what is actually going on. 

There is more coverage of this here, here, and here at the U.K. Sun, which manages to work the word "zombie" into the headline. 

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 08:21 AM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
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1 One of the first things that popped into my head was: imagine if Ukraine had spent the money they wasted in 2016 trying to swing the election to Hillary (Something the Ukrainians actually admitted to trying.) and used it for more constructive purposes...

Posted by: cxt217 at Sat May 8 14:47:46 2021 (4i7w0)

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What colour is a green orange?




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